Coca-Cola looks to coffee to boost energy drink market

Posted by Daniel Palmer on 4th July 2008

The energy drink market has become increasingly competitive, as beverage companies seek to capitalise on the desire for consumers to find an energy boost during their day.

The global energy drink industry, which has been one of the top performing beverage sectors over the past decade, is still dominated by Red Bull despite several attempts by beverage giants PepsiCo and Coca-Cola to take a chunk out of their market share.

In Australia and New Zealand ‘V’, owned by Frucor Beverages, has proved the only successful challenger to Red Bull and has now overtaken Red Bull as the leading energy drink in the two countries. The failure of Coca-Cola’s ‘Mother’ last year (which has recently been re-launched) is indicative of the struggles that the large beverage manufacturers are having when trying to enter the category.

The attempts by companies to capitalise on the sector in the US are many and varied, but Coca-Cola has seen some success with their Full Throttle brand in the US. They are now set to expand their range with the launch of Full Throttle Coffee, a creamy coffee and energy blend, with the roll-out in America to take place over the coming two months. The drink is symbolic of the trend in the energy drink marketplace to adapt energy drink ingredients into traditional beverages.

The product comes in mocha, vanilla and caramel flavours and reportedly combines 100 per cent premium Colombian Arabica coffee with Full Throttle’s energy and vitamin blend.

Rafael Acevedo, Senior Brand Manager of Coca-Cola energy drinks in North America, believes that the drink has the potential to appeal to men, in particular. “Guys are increasingly looking for great-tasting beverage options that will give them the extra ‘kick’ they need to conquer their day,” he said. “Full Throttle Coffee combines the smooth, rich taste of coffee with the intensity that you can only get from a Full Throttle Energy Drink.”

The success, or otherwise, of the product will be intriguing, as energy drinks for many serve as a coffee substitute due to the high caffeine nature of both types of beverages.

Full Throttle Coffee - Mocha